Chinese video platform iQiyi says it has 100 million paying users

Content is key.

Photo:KrASIA

On Saturday, Chinese video platform iQiyi’s number of paying subscribers surpassed 100 million, according to a post by the company on its WeChat feed.

The company said this milestone indicates that pay-to-view content has become a must-have for Chinese internet users.

iQiyi predicts China’s video subscription market will see robust growth, driven by technologies like 5G, artificial intelligence, and virtual reality, as well as the production of original content.

The Chinese video platform disclosed in its first quarter report that it had 96.8 million subscribers as of March 31, up 58% year-on-year. Among those subscribers, 98.6% had paid for access to videos. In the first quarter of this year, iQiyi racked up an operating loss of RMB 2 billion (USD 301.9 million), according to the same report.

iQiyi is a primary competitor to Tencent Video. In its first quarter report, Tencent recorded a 43% annual increase in Tencent Video’s subscription numbers to 89 million. However, the company did not indicate whether this was part or all of Tencent Video’s paying customers.